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This remarkable line of fortifications extends from Fomm ir-Rih in the western region to Madliena Heights near the eastern shores of the island - a distance of 12 kin. The defensive line was completed in 1897, the year of Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee.

The lines, which consist of a stone breastwork built on the edge of an extensive ridge, were intended to protect Valletta and the Harbour area from an invasion by enemy forces on the north coast.

The Victoria Lines were built along the Great Fault - a natural depression of the land in those parts of Malta, as well as the flatlands which extend to the eastern coastline.

The long parapet along the escarpment is punctuated with watch-towers, batteries, gun eraplacements, and various strongholds starting from Foram ir-Rih to Fort Bingemina, then to Nadur Tower, Targa Battery, Mosta Fort and to the fortress at Madliena which commands the shoreline in the east. Gaps in the lines at Bingeroma, Falka, Targa, and Naxxar facilitate the traffic flow.

At present, the Victoria Lines have no military worth, but their position on a stretch of scenic landscape presents an interesting expedence to the visitor.

The most rewarding tract of the lines, is that between Nadur Tower and Falka Gap - a distance of 3km. The scenery is impressive in all directions. On the way, one can admire varieties of wild plants and flowers or stop to explore the ancient rock cut tombs and the curious cart ruts near the Bingemina Gap. The high ridge here, near the lonely chapel, offers sweeping views over Mgarr village and its green countryside, with the Island of Gozo as background on the Northern sealine.

Text courtesy of the National Tourism Organisation - Malta.